Ankle Ligament Injuries and Instability

Ankle Ligament Injuries (sprains) are incredibly common, and can normally be treated with proper rest and immobilization of the injury.  Ligaments can be injured by twisting or stretching the ankle beyond its normal position, and it can occur in a vast number of ways.  These injuries are very common in athletic settings, however they also occur frequently from everyday activities, such as tripping and falling.  If the ligament becomes re-injured it may cause instability in the ankle.

Symptoms to ligament injuries include:

  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Heat
  • Pain
  • Inability to walk on injured ankle
  • Bruising

Because these symptoms are very similar to that of a fracture, ankle injuries should always be examined by a doctor.

An injured ligament will require proper rest, non-weight bearing, immobilization, physical therapy.  If the ligament is torn and does not heal after non-surgical treatment methods are executed, surgery may be recommended to reconstruct the ligament and restore the ankle to perform as desired.

Recovery time

Recovery time can be 12 weeks or longer; the first 6 weeks will require the patient to bear no weight on the ankle and the last 6 weeks will involve strengthening and improving range of motion of the ankle.  Patients may expect 2 or more weeks of limited exercised before returning back to high-impact exercises.